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HMS Pegasus by simonthepieman - Victory Models - 1/64 - started by SpyGlass

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Right here we go -  thre are already some nice Pegasus/Fly logs back so I will not try to restore all my log since there will be some duplication.  I will concentrate on the bits which I had feedback as being helpful.  


10TH NOVEMBER 2013 -Just an update to tidy up the log a bit while I wait for paint to dry !!





SECTION 1 - Problems with kit


SECTION 2 - Preparation before glueing





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SECTION 1 - Problems with the kit


The kits are in general very good but there are some points that are worth noting so just flag these up front.


I shall add in any more that I remember or that anybody points out


*FIRST AND MAJOR point - the ply gunport strips simply do not fit. 

 Most builders find the best solution is to move the "jigsaw" joint between front and rear strips backward so that the aft strip only touchs   bulkhead 9  by about a mm or so. That correction overcomes all the issues


* The plywood keel and bulkhead sections (mostly of Fly) are prone to be slightly warped. The MDF sections (mostly Pegasus) are better.


* The ply main deck is in two sections on Pegasus and a single piece on Fly and there are ply type/quality differences. 

    The Pegasus ply is very flimsy and needs great care in handling.

     It is very easy to damage the area in the middle of the deck which has several closely adjacent cut outs.

    The centre line of the deck  can do with strengthening and you might like to r extend the bulkheads under to provide more  support.




     I STRONGLY suggest that you do NOT cut the Fly deck into two halves .

    It can be "sprung" in and out of position a few times as required during fitting without damage.


*The main mast Bitts /Gallows is the wrong length and shape in one of the kits . I had a discussion with the designer and confirmed this.

   I think the drawing is right in both cases just the actual cutting is wrong.  Check on your kit. There is a picture in te deck fitting ection below





SECTION 2 - Preparation before glueing



The bulkhead and keel plywood (FLY) or MDF ( Pegasus) fit beautifully BUT resist the temptations to align and glue straight away.


 There are a number of things which are worth attending to at this stage before opening the glue pot.


Check the plywood / mdf keel and bulkhead sheets for any warping. Correct by damping and weighting or if too bad get a replacement. A warped keel gives a lot of later bother.


Initial shaping of the edges on the first few and last few bulkheads to allow planks to lie flat is more easily done before fixing.


I havent got any pics of the stern at this stage  BUT  it should be noted that bulkhead sections 12 and 13 require a very steep chamfer.


The two pics below - from later in the build - illustrate the  amount of chamfer required on the forrard bulkheads





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Preparing the Rabbet and thinning the keel section at the stern


Planking is much easier if a rabbet is done. 

This can be done by working on the edge of the keel section now . In this kit when combined with the walnut keel, stem and stem sections simplify the task


In essence one removes one layer of ply (or equivalent depth) in MDF from the edge of the keel .  


I had success using the "cutout" from the keel section n=board to act as a guide to cut the rabbet





The walnut stem piece requires a matching rabbet on the "tongue" .  I am sorry I havent got manypics in detail but the ones below show the idea.





Alsa  this is the time to "thin down" the after part of the keel.  Otherwise one ends up with too many layers of planks to fit properly against the stern post



 I choose to run the thinning from half way between the bearding line (the bottom edge line of teh bulkheads)  and the edge of the keel section . Later i will smooth down theh edge of the first planking to that halfway point to give a smooth transistion for the second planking.  The pics i am afraid are from a later stage .

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SECTION 3 - Fixing for stand



I like a set of pillars for a model but for any type of stand it is convenient fto have a firm mounting.


I use a " captive nut" technique to allow the model to be bolted to a stand later.


The pics below I think are self expanatory .  Sopens a bit of time working out where you want your stand fixings to be and you need to be practical about working round bulk heads when positioning.  All it needs is a fairly steady hand when drilling the keel.


(You can see the rabbet cut in some of the pics)





I use 5 gauge bolts


A block is glued to both side of the keel which hold the nut rigid.  Use lots of iso to fix and keep a bolt turning in the nut to keep the thread clear as the glue sets



Edited by SpyGlass
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The "book" says fit the walnut stem, stern and keel pieces next.  Many (most) buiders actually defer this - at very least not fitting the stern post.

The build , sanding etc is easier for many if  these bits are not in the way.


I fit these pieces on a temporary basis - using the stand mounting bolt fittings as above and drilling and pegging the stem and stern pieces in alignment  ( Pics are from later in teh build)


SECTION 4 -  Temporary Keel Fitting











Jumping a bit ahead. When you have all the bulkheads and lower deck fitted on the keel section but before fitting the main deck, you may wish to think about planking the section of the lower deck that can be just glimpsed through the upper decks hatches when fitted. Nice touch - you will be able to see that when I post pics of the deck planing later.

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SECTION 5 - Gunport Strips


 I like to fit these before the deck planking is done.  Simply it means the bulkhead tops which have to be removed to plank can still be in place to allow easier fitting of the strips.


The strips as noted above DO NOT FIT - moving the jigsaw joint back corrects.

Allow about 1.2mm overlap of the rear strip onto Bulkhead 9 - I also  extend that bulkhead backwards to strengthen the joint





Fitting the strips can be a real pain - but well soaked and pinned into place with repetition as required can actually mould the strips into a almost perfect fit. 


Note the "S" shaped curve at the rear end of the forrard strip






Pay attention to the lower edge of the strip which has a tendency to go wavy - clamping using spare strips helps.


Also use clamped spare strip to  push the ply into teh "s" shaped vertical curves - the red arrows indicate some of these




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If you have the gunport strips fitted you no longer need the tops of the middle bulkheads.

You will find that for PLYWOOD ones the old fashioned method of just grabbing them in a pair of pliers and turning breaks them off cleanly - the MDF ones need a bit of cutting to start I found.


The planking layout in three sections in the instructions doesnt seem to actually help at all - most builder ignore and plank in straight runs bow to stern.


I use my own personal layout for my Pegasus/Fly builds.

Pegasus benefits from a " kingplank" down the centre - to strengthen that central deck ply joint even more.

Then I use a symmetrical three plank repeat.  Planks 66mm long, offset 22mm each run






I do not cut the planks to length but use a jig to drill out the nail holes and score using a .006 feeler gauge to indicate plank ends.




I use a soft pencil to mark drill holes and  end scoring (feeler gauge edge pushes pencil into the score line well).

Then a quick dab of dilute varnish to hold the marking


I use soft pencil along both sides of the planking strips but as i glue each strip I run a .004 feeler gauge along the gap. 






I find that after varnishing this give me a finish to my satisfaction


 With a bit of fiddling I also managed to get the planking to finish against the deck edge adding another slightly wider "margin" plank which fits nicely against the bulwarks




You can see the varnish dabs to contain the pencil marking.


Deck flattened using the edge of a blade I find is by far the best approach.

Temprary strips in to protect bulwarks



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Deck furniture


There are no real problems here.


I repeat my warning about the main mast Bitts /Gallows vertical members being the wrong length in some kits .

If you look at the picture below you can see - unpainted  - at the  right justover the grating there is one overlength one and one correct length lying together - that also illustrates that it is not just a simple overlength issue - the piece requre a bit more work than just shortening


The asssembled bits just laid out for checking




I found it handy to pin the joints on the forward riding bitts ,

And also the base of these since there is no lower deck cutout



The ladder need to be a bit "crooked" to allow for the deck slope


The lower capstan can be jiggled a bit to line up with the one above, I believe that these actually would be one unit.

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Inner Bulwarks


Once you have the deck planking  done you can if,you wish, fit all or part of the inner bulwarks.


A neat tip worth passing on - paint the lower bulwark strip BEFORE gluing it on - gives a neat edge against the deck.



I tend to cheat a bit and not plank under the forward and aft decks where it cant be seen but  that actually may be a trivial saving.

What I have done in the past and the present build is to " frame off" the inner bulwarks around ports which are fitted with lids 

By positioning a little overlap one can easily create a stepped frame where the gun port lid would close against - actually  a little further into the hull than reality but very easy way of framing. 




There is a weeny problem doing this which i am thinking about now - I prefer to do the outer second plank in long strips over the ports and cut out the ports afterwards - that is VERY tricky to do with these "frames" in place.

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There is a lot of discussion about guns for Pegasus and Fly.  The kit ones are "Amati standard" ones and subject to a lot of criticisms..


The wooden carriages in Pegasus kits are supposed to be an improvement but I found that the disgraceful quality of the ply used made it hard to make a decent job.


There is lots of advice around about replacements of better scale.


However I found that a satisfactory (to me !) job could be made using the metal carriages as supplied for Fly.


Rigging  is also subject to a lot of discussion  - and  fully rigging the guns seems to be only required by a perfectionist.


But here is some input.


First the carriages can be drilled - I use Dremel at quite a slow speed but with LOTS of water lubrication. ( OK  I spit on it a lot !)


BUT I "punch" the drilling position with a needle set into a piece of wood to give a starting dimple otherwise the drill wanders


This means that rings for rigging  can be attached nicely.





I haven't got all the pics I lost in the big crash but here is a trial example just to illustrate the general approach




IT SHOULD BE NOTED that Amati seem to define the size of a block by its WIDTH !!!!!


So the instructions for rigging the guns   are misleading  I found a 2mm long block seemed just too small.

A 3mm block seemed right. 

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I remember that people were complaining about the size of the metal carriages or even guns, but others said it was ok according to their sources and from what I found, the metal carriages really should not be far from the correct scale, maybe a tad too long (2 mm at most). Do you have any further insight on that?


Temporarily I chose to use the supplied parts, cause of their nice shape and high detail, and I'm already thinking about drilling holes, which should not be a problem with the exact approach you used. However, I'm shooting for historical correctness (though I don't want to get hysterical about it), so what's the lesser evil in your opinion?

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My opinion  is that at MY level of modelling the Fly guns and metal carriages do fine and save a lot of fiddly work . 

I had a spare set of Fly guns available which I am using for this Pegasus but the metal sets are standard Amati parts.


The ply that my Pegasus carriages were cut from was so poor as to be unusable and  would need replacing if I had been going to build


I do think that the weight of opinion is correct that the guns are indeed somewhat off scale


If you were going to actually build wood carriages - I would dump the Pegasus supplied  wooden carriages AND the guns and go for the better scale versions of  carriage and gun available.




The ring positioning in my picture above was not exactly the final one I chose so dont take the picture as defining the exact drilling points.  The exact position needs to give a good clear run for the fittings to your chosen fastening positions on teh bulwarks.


On rigging another point.


Most builders " Flemish" down the ends of the tackle ropes in nice pretty circles.  This is not  and was not done in actual practice its an entirely impractical way . 

Ends should be flaked out lying on the deck ready for use or  frapped around the ropes between blocks


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Well back to build log.

You may recall I was rudely interrupted when my builders dismantled my working area along with a few other rooms.

Well that is all restored and I am just sorting out the bits, parts built , parts spare and trying to remember what I was about to do.


So an inventory of where I am.


HULL -  externally totally first planked , second planked to wale,


I choose to deviate from good planking practice because I wanted "pretty" planking at the bow and stern- but that caused me so much bother - never again.


The two pics below show - the port side as I planked originally and the starboard side after correction to get the wale line to lie more correctly. The top 2 or 3 strips at present fitted will lie under the wale so I was a little less fussy there








Starboard side planking adjusted and looks fine to me BUT  I had a problem with a totally unexplained plank lift at stern.  I had started to cut out for repair so thats number one task now.

The square patch is a trial run to see the effect of my proposed varnish




The damage where the end of the strips lifted cut roughly for repair

Note the curved ply counter piece



The port side needs the second planking reworking around the wale line to match the starboard side. 




Deck is fully planked, nails represented and first light varnish coat.





You will see from the pics above that I modified the counter a little by curving the ply piece around a tin approx 100mm in diameter

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This is just everything that i had done some work on laid out to see where I was and to make sure I hadnt lost anything with all the moving about.




While I was doing that there were a couple of points I thought might be worthy of a note.



I strengthened the foredeck with additional beaming and that can be seen.

I used a spare Fly foredeck instead of the Pegasus one with its poor ply. 


For the Rear deck I didn't have a spare so I will be VERY careful with the poor Pegasus ply





You can see the  cabin window strips with a greater curve than the plans - with my prototype Fly one underneath.

 The rear supports for the cabin I of course needed to curve more than the plans to match more closely the NMM drawings I purchased




C The trial gun assembly is there and in the main pic there are a few possible alternative barrels - I decided to stick with the Fly/Pegasus ones as I have said. 

Next to it is my prototype tackle set - three per gun - where they can be seen. Hooks are a bit bent I see. Also it is well worth just notching the block where the rope rests on it- I just did it with a scalpel to give a little groove for the rope to lie in. Its not done on this one but it does make the whole set lie much more neatly







 Note in the centre of the top big picture some of the pre-painted inner bulwark strips used to get a clean line against the deck

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  • 2 weeks later...

Yes  i think that some detailing of the cabin and under the fo'c'sle is what i was thinking of if I do go that way.


There is some nice work already shown by others - though i dont think my needle work is up to the soft furnishings!


But the stove and  getting the capstans on one barrel and adjusting the beams etc all seem fun.


But oh dear  my soul says a sailing vessel should have masts.



But i shall have enforced thinking times - my floor in the house has just shown a problem again so I am about to have my work space invaded again

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Well cant put it off any longer - actually resumed work cutting and shaping wood again.


 Prebending some of the second planking strips to complete the planking. 


(yes it is a Fly hull - the one that got warped in storage while I moved some years ago but a very handy template !)


I selected and put aside these strips at the beginning so they all colour matched since - as I have noted before - the walnut of this kit is very variable( The keel sections and deck bitts pieces etc are really very light indeed in the most recent one I saw - not "walnut" colour at all.).


Measured up carefully so I can modify the port planking line at the wale position to match both side.

I am also bending a strip to use as a positioning strip since I am going to plank now down from the top of midships on gunport strips



I am going to use white glue for rest of second planking. CA has done fine in this my first try at planking with it but i do find that I prefer white. Also I am sure now that the  sprung  plank ends at the stern were caused by a drop of solvent while i was cleaning up the CA- white glue would have stayed put I think.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Well managed to make some sort of job of patching the risen area of planks.


I think the planking patterns matches no known approach but its at least tidy.


When I had the planks off I could see a clear mark where I think some solvent had got in while i was cleaning up the planks.   I really think white glue is the best for me,   CA is quick but I am just too messy! 


Anyway here is the damage after I had cleaned it up a bit.



Little bit of relaying to get some stealers in though that didnt work out quiet as I expected



And the final result before any sanding or finishing.





On to complete the planking this week I hope.

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  • 2 weeks later...

She is going to have masts - the Commodore has spoken!


Just finishing the second planking at last.  The hull repair and the realigning of the port side wale position seem fine now


 I dont why but this hull seems to have given me so much more trouble than any other I have done.


Had a bit of a problem with the second planking walnut, it seems very brittle.


I have left off the plank run through the middle of the gun ports till later just to give me easier initial access for shaping. ( The apparent dip of the run at the stern is an artefact of camera angle)




Before actually cutting the ports to final shape I will smooth the hull, reduces the possibilities of damage of the plank edges at the ports.


I think the planking, while not perfect, is good enough to  finish the lower hull with varnish.

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